Category Archives: funny

The Curse


Last night while I was fast asleep, an evil troll snuck into my house.

With ninja like stealth, he crept into my room and made himself cozy between my husband and I in our bed.

He didn’t make a single sound or move a single muscle for five long hours. He just laid in our bed and listened for the signal.

At five o’clock, a morning dove cooed ever so softly in my backyard.

This was the signal the troll had been waiting to hear. It was finally curse time.

The troll slowly sat up and immediately cast sleeping spells on my husband and I. He could not risk either of us waking up and ruining his diabolical plan.

Then, he moved his repulsive face extremely close to mine and began chanting in my ear;

The story is gone.

The idea is dead.

I curse this story

to stay trapped in your head.

He repeated this sixteen times and then blew as hard as he could into my left ear. His troll breath was so hot and putrid that it burned the curse deep into my mind.

Satisfied with his work, he scurried out of my house and vanished into the early morning light.

I woke up about an hour later to the sound of my husband in the shower and a very loud bird making strange noises outside.

I laid in bed for a few minutes, thinking about the day ahead. I remembered my super awesome blog post idea and got excited. This was going to be my most creative and best writing ever!

The day went on as usual. Got the boys ready for school, took my daughter to the park, fed her lunch and then put her down for her nap. Finally it was time to write.

As I sat down at my lap top, all fired up to bang out an epic post, something odd happened.

I absolutely could not put my idea in writing. I knew exactly what I wanted to say, but everything  just came out wrong. I wrote and deleted a staggering amount of sentences.

I spent my entire afternoon feeling frustrated.

After dinner, I sat down and tried again.


I could literally hear crickets.

What’s wrong with me? It’s like this epic idea is just sitting inside my noggin, mocking me.

About an hour ago, I started to write a post about my plight.

It was so boring, I almost lapsed into a coma.

It was promptly deleted.

I think it’s time for me to officially give up for the day.

What a disappointing day of writing.

Maybe once I stop obsessing about this idea, it’ll just flow right out of me.

Fingers crossed that this bout of writer’s block is only temporary.

It’s not like I’m cursed, right???

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Frothy Friday


My internet has been totally wonky since yesterday.

It seems to be working just fine now.

I’m going to pretend that it’s still broken and use that as an excuse NOT to blog tonight.

I’m in no state to write anything even remotely intelligent, witty or coherent.

Here are the reasons why;

1. I just spent my evening being on the receiving end of my five year old’s shit list.

2. I am pooped from a long day of work.

3. There is a mass amount of beer in my fridge that is calling my name. It’s saying, NFred! Drink us! Drink us all! We taste so good! We love you! We’ll make all your troubles disappear! Don’t spend your night on the computer! Spend all your time with us, DRINKING!”

You have to admit that the beer in my fridge does have several compelling arguments.

Therefore, I shall choose beer over blog tonight.


I’m working on something that I hope will be ready soon…

I promise that it will be as intriguing as a cat wearing a ball gown.


Now off to beer I go!

Hope you’re all enjoying a Frothy Friday!

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Frustrating Friday



Today was a legendary day in the world of retail.

L E G E N D A R Y.

Every single terrible customer in the history of the universe decided to come shopping at my store.

Here are the top three offenders…

1. Irate granny who didn’t get her senior’s discount. When I refunded her the difference, she complained that it took me too long and put everyone in a bad mood. When I told her I was in great spirits she rolled her eyes at me.

2. Strange french speaking woman who went on and on about how she bought the same product that we sell for $3.49 for $0.99 in the United States. This baffled her to no end. Her mind was totally blown. She might never be the same.

3. Creepy twins with even creepier parents who are regulars at our store and stay there for HOURS. Today they spent a good two hours in the morning and probably a solid hour after lunch. Creepy twin dad even asked us for a chair to sit on and if we could fill up his water bottle. We said no to both because I work at a toy store and not a spa. At one point, creepy dad even asked me to watch his twins while he went to another store. They are five. FIVE. Obviously he thinks we are both a spa and a daycare. 

Now that I am sitting in my cozy house, double fisting beer, I can laugh at the irksome behaviors that I had to endure. 

Deep down in my cold black heart, I feel sorry for these people. Their lives must be so miserable. The only way they can feel better about themselves is to be complete ass-hats.

This terrible day was not a total wash. I came home to a delicious bbq dinner, my son scored a goal at soccer AND there are cookies in my cupboard. 


I wonder what all the ass-hats are doing right now???

Actually, I don’t want to know. I just want to sit here in the beautiful silence of my home and forget that they even exist.


*Serious italic time…I feel bad for writing such a bitchy and unkind post. These people might be swell individuals. Who am I to judge them? I’m just some mom who works in a toy store. I really should try to be a nicer person…I really should. But it’s so easy to hate people who treat you like used toilet paper. I’m sure there’s some good inside of them…deep, deep, deep down. Like maybe they are good at recycling or baking or origami or underwater basket weaving or shoveling snow or breathing.



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More Money, More Awesome!



When my husband and I first moved in together, we were super poor.

I remember not having enough money for bus fare and having to walk to work. 

I remember that a dinner of rice with canned tomatoes on top was considered fine dining.

I remember counting dimes and nickles, desperately hoping we had enough money for a couple of cans of beer.

One time during our days of extreme poorness, something magical happened. 

It was an unseasonably warm day. My husband and I decided to go for a walk around downtown, because that’s the kind of free activity you do when you have no money.

Right before leaving our apartment, my husband decided to change into some shorts. He had to dig around in our closet for a while to find some. I was getting impatient. Finally he found a pair of black shorts and threw them on. He shoved his hands in the pockets to smooth them out and then made a very strange face.

“What”? I said because I’m nosy.

“There’s something in here and it feels like money”, he said with a huge grin.

“Yeah right”, I said not believing him because he was always playing tricks on me.

Just then he pulled his hand out of his pocket and produced a  FIFTY DOLLAR BILL!

We screamed like idiots! Fifty Dollars! So much money! So much excitement!

To this day, my husband does not remember where he got the magical fifty dollar bill from or who gave it to him. I don’t know how a person forgets that they have money stashed somewhere, but this is my husband we’re talking about. Four days out of six, he leaves for work with some combination of his wallet, keys, cellphone or coffee left behind on the kitchen counter.

So how did we spend the money? We bought bus tickets and groceries and put the remaining money towards an outstanding bill.


Because we were such responsible young adults, we used the money to buy a couple of cases of beer and drank our faces off.

Imagine if every time you put your hand in your pocket, you pulled out a fifty dollar bill???

Here is a list of things that I would do with my magical money…


1. Get a haircut. Not very extravagant, but if you could see my hair right now you’d understand. It’s pretty much achieved mermaid status. A few more inches, and I will no longer need to wear a shirt.


2. Buy some NEW clothes. Not clothes that someone has worn before me. We’re talking clothes with the price tags still attached. I’d buy some expensive jeans that would shield the world from my butt cleavage, bras that actually fit and t-shirts that don’t have sweat stains in the armpits.


3. I’d so go to Ikea and buy matching dishes and funky curtains and meatballs (not the ones made from horse meat) and a bunch of random kitchen gadgets that all have crazy Swedish names.


4. Buy a lot of Blizzards.


5. And finally, for my splurge, I’d take my family to South Africa and we’d get on a boat and watch great white sharks leap out of the water!


I do not believe the line, “more money, more problems”.  

I have never once heard someone complain that they have too much money. If I did, I would slap that person and then make them buy me a dozen donuts and a fancy iced coffee.

I think it should be changed from “more money, more problems”  to “more money, more awesome”. 

Think about it!

You could take more awesome trips, eat more awesome food, wear more awesome clothes and have more awesome parties. 

From this moment on, “more money, more awesome” is my new mantra! 


Anyone know where I can get my hands on an endless stash of fifty dollar bills???






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It’s almost ten o’clock at night, which is like three a.m. in mom time.


I’m on my second beer, which is like six beers in mom drinking.


I just watched an entire kids movie and did not fall asleep, which is legendary in mom endurance.


I have two school fun fairs to attend tomorrow, which are like the freak’n Oscars of mom outings.


I’m about to scarf down some cookies and watch the Food Network, which is like eating a chocolate souffle while having an hour long massage in mom indulgence.


*Time for the serious italics. This is a terrible post. TERRIBLE. But I am committed to writing something EVERY FRIDAY, even if it’s just a jumble of words that lack any sort of creativity or continuity or coherence. I apologize with all my heart. I shall now crack open beer number three. That’s right, THREE. Shit’s about to get real…and by that i mean, I’ll be fast asleep in my bed within half an hour.

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I’ve been working ever so hard on the first chapter of my story. I was extremely confident that it would be ready to post by today.

Sadly, it is not.

I was just looking it over and have decided that it is absolute shit.


The plot rivals that of a terribly cheesy Disney Channel show. I think my main character was a sentence away from turning into a wizard or seeing the future or going to school on a cruise ship.

Obviously I need to rethink my whole story. But before I do that, I’ll write a little something about French people.


I love French people. I really do. I love them so much, that I married one.

French people are animated and passionate and they like to talk with their hands. The French people that I know like to break out into song, bake things with funny names like Nun’s Farts and they often cry at random things like cell phone commercials or old episodes of Saved By the Bell.

When I say French people, I am of course talking about French Canadians. I live in Ottawa, which is a super bilingual city. I work in retail and I pretty much speak french every day. I can honestly say that French is the only useful thing I ever took in high school. I don’t seem to use much algebra or chemistry or Canada Fitness Beep Tests in my day to day life.

My French isn’t awesome, but it’s not terrible. I can totally follow a conversation in French. I might get a little jumbled in my head when I’m trying to speak the language. I might not conjugate the verbs properly. I might mix up the words for “chin” and “jacket” and “sheep”. I might make up words in French to sound intelligent. Actually, I do that in English too. I like to refribulate words.

At work, I’ve had some great experiences with French customers. Most of them are kind and patient and appreciative when I’m serving them in my choppy, beat up French.

Some, however, are not.

Here are two examples…

1. I don’t understand when a customer comes up to me and asks me in French if I speak French and I say yes and then they ask me their question in French and I answer in French and then they answer me back in English??? It’s so confusing and terribly awkward. Do I keep talking in French? I feel like if they wanted to be served in French in the first place, then that’s what I’ll do. Or should I? Is my French offensively bad? Je ne pense pas, mais peut-etre???

2. I usually say “hi” or “hello” when customers enter my store. Most people say hi back or smile or nod in my general direction. Do you know what really gets my goat? When I make eye contact with a customer and say hello and they just stare blankly at me like I’m a moron. I’ve had this happen several times. So awkward. I usually follow up with a “how are you” and often get a reply. When I don’t, I have to pull out the big guns and hit them with a “bonjour” The power of that word will never cease to amaze me. More magical than Bibbity Bobbity Boo or Wingardium Leviosa or Hocus Pocus Alamagocus, a simple “bonjour” said to the right person can completely change their personality! I’ve seen it with my own eyes! Upon hearing it, their whole demeanor changes and they often become chatty, social or dare I say, PLEASANT. It must be really hard to live in a completely bilingual city like Ottawa and not know what “hi” means. How awful it must be to have people in stores, restaurants and even on the phone taunting you relentlessly with this strange and confusing syllable.

All this writing about French people has gotten me really hungry for a giant pile of poutine…

I shall resist my craving for some delicious fries, gravy and curds and instead go back to work on my terrible story.

Maybe my main character should be French? I could give her a great French name like Pierette or Guylaine or Maude???


And maybe from now on, I’ll end all my posts like this…



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Fast Forwarded Friday



*I’m totally cheating and writing this post on Thursday because tomorrow is a super crazy day and I don’t want to upset my die hard followers…who happen to be my mom and dad. I apologize for being all sneaky like and breaking with the Friday Nfred beer and blog tradition. I hope you’re not so disappointed that you never read this blog again because that would make me sad and when I feel sad, I eat chocolate. And when I eat too much chocolate, Captain Red Face shows up. And when Captain Red Face shows up, I get all self conscious and full of angst and I basically regress to my awkward fourteen year old self. To wrap up this italic rant, please read my post even though it’s not Friday. If you do, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that you have saved me from both over eating and Captain Red Face. High fives all around!*


The summer before grade nine was a tumultuous time in my life for many reasons…


1. I was petrified to start high school in the fall. Everything that I knew about grade nine came from my older brother and Degrassi. According to my brother, high school was lame and the teachers were lame and the kids were lame and it would suck and I would hate everything and everyone would think I was a loser and no, I was not allowed to talk to him at school. According to Degrassi, I would get pregnant at a house party, start dressing like a trollop, get an older abusive boyfriend and drop acid at a concert which would result in a horrible accident. Also, older kids would chase me around calling me “miner niner”. It all sounded so horrifying. Couldn’t I just stay in grade eight for a couple more years???


2. I was growing out my hair from a disastrous pixie cut. I believed the hairdresser when she said that I had great bone structure and would look like a sophisticated young woman. Instead I looked like a ten year old boy. The summer before grade nine, my hair was at that awkward length where it was too short to wear up, but too long that it wouldn’t just sit nicely on my head and behave. It had a mind of it’s own. It curled in random directions and was frizzy and puffy and a total nightmare. I spent hours staring at my hair from all angles in the three way mirror of my upstairs bathroom. I brushed and gelled and hairsprayed and willed my hair to grow faster. I felt like all my worries would vanish if I could just start high school with long, luxurious locks.


3. As if I didn’t feel bad enough about my physical appearance, I had to start wearing glasses right before grade nine started. In the early nineties, there was so such thing as “cool” eye wear. There were no hip square frames or chic wire rimmed glasses or really any appealing choices available for fourteen year old girls, except for contacts which I was not allowed. I was stuck with giant royal blue frames that I unsuccessfully tried my best to break, lose or forget at home for pretty much all of grade nine.


I bet you’re wondering why I’m choosing to dredge up all these dorktastic memories of my early teen years.

Well here goes…

I’ve always loved to write and whenever I get the yen to write any sort of fiction, it always falls into the Young Adult category. There’s something terribly wonderful about being a teenager. It’s confusing and exciting and scary and marvelous all at the same time.

Everyone has awkward stories from their teen years. EVERYONE!

Everyone’s gone through an ugly duckling phase. EVERYONE!

My favourite book of all time is, “Are You There God? It’s me Margaret” by Judy Blume. That book was my bible. I was never a reader as a kid, but that story captivated me. People who know me now would be shocked to learn that I was super shy as a kid when it came to talking about sex or boys or puberty with my parents. I would have rather gone to summer school or the dentist or summer dentistry school, ANYTHING but have a grown up chat with the parental units. That book gave me the answers I was so desperately seeking in the least awkward of ways. It reassured me that I was just a normal kid that was simply growing up.

Also, “we must, we must, we must increase our busts” was a catchy and extremely useful chant.

My biggest dream in life is to write a book someday. I have no desire to write the next Canadian literary juggernaut. I would love to be able to write a smart and sassy book for teen girls. In fact  I’ve already started and would you believe that the working title is…dun dun dunnn…

The Summer Before Grade Nine!

In the next couple of weeks, I’m going to start sharing my story on this very blog. The idea of this scares the poop out of me! But look how horrified I was to start this blog, and now it’s easy peasy.

What’s the point of life if you don’t at least try some things that scare you? Things that force you outside of your comfort zone? Things that make you so anxious that you feel like you’re going to ralph all over your keyboard?

Wait, why am I committing to this again?

Oh right, dreams and goals and shit.

The first chapter will be coming along next week.

I hope all you NFred readers, hi Mom and Dad, will enjoy reading my story.

Stay tuned…

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Flushed Friday


Last night, I did not sleep well.

I was up most of the night with my very fevered and extremely clingy two year old daughter.

As I faded in and out of sleep, my mind went a wandering. I had this one train of thought that went like this…

My daughter feels warm…

I wonder if she’s flushed?

Flushed starts with the letter “F”…

Tomorrow is Friday...

I need an “F” word to write about…


What does “flushed” mean?

Flush the toilet? Fat flush? Flushed face?

Why does your face flush?

Because you have a fever…

Or you’re hot and sweaty…

Or sun burned…

Or you have Captain Red Face..(Here’s the link if you don’t know what that is;   .

Or you drank too much…

Or because you’re embarrassed…

I could write about being embarrassed…

What time is it?

Why won’t my daughter sleep?

I need to pee…

I’ll make sure to flush after I pee…

I wonder if I’ll be flushed while I flush?

When I got in the shower this morning, my mental ramblings came back to me. The word “flushed” popped back into my mind and stayed there for most of the day.

On my lunch break at work, I started to think about things that I’ve done that have been embarrassing.

Let me tell you, it’s a very lengthily list.

Out of nowhere, a beer soaked memory from the late nineties came rushing back to me…

It was a Monday night in the summer of 1997. I was enjoying some pints with friends at our local watering hole. I had just turned nineteen and was leaving for University in a few short weeks. It was a tumultuous time in my life. I was both anxious and excited about moving away. Drinking beer in bulk seemed to be the only solution for quelling my university anxieties.

It was my turn to buy the next round. I floated from my seat to the bar. I was just starting to feel the affects of the alcohol. I felt light and cheery and completely zen as I ordered a pitcher of beer.

Pitcher in hand, I made my way back out to the patio where my friends were waiting. As soon as I set foot outside, I noticed that a group of guys had taken up residence directly behind where my friend and I were sitting.

These just weren’t any guys…these were the supremely popular and attractive boys that had graduated from high school a few years before me.

Because I was enjoying the early effects of my beer buzz, I confidently smiled at them as I walked over to my table. I felt like a million bucks!

I set the pitcher on our table and reached into my bag to get some lip balm before sitting down.

I had just tucked into my pint when all of a sudden someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned around and was completely floored to see that it was one of the cool, older boys. I flashed him a huge, “I’m so awesome” smile. I couldn’t believe that this total babe wanted to talk to me! ME! I didn’t even think those boys knew I was alive! Now one of them was touching me! ME!

Before I had the chance to say something witty and charming that would make this boy fall madly in love with me, I noticed that he was holding something peculiar in his hand.

“I think you dropped this,” he said as he handed me an individually wrapped maxi pad. I recognized it immediately. It was my standby Always pad that I kept in my bag for emergencies.

“It fell out of your purse”, he said as his handsome boy friends erupted in laughter.

I sat there, totally frozen, with a maxi pad wrapped in pastel pink paper sitting in the palm of my hand. I was so embarrassed that my face turned fire engine red. I wanted to crawl under my table and die.

As I watched Sanitary Napkin Delivery Boy walk back to his table and high five his bros, I made the swift decision that I would not let him ruin my night. I stoically tucked my feminine protection back into my bag and promptly did a shot of tequila…followed by another.

The rest of the night is pretty much a blur.

I wish this story had a different ending. One where I walk up to Sanitary Napkin Delivery Boy and his table of hot boys and eloquently call them out for their immature behaviour. The bar patrons would erupt in applause and people would chant my name. The boys would be forced to leave and once they were gone, the barkeep would enthusiastically shout, “drinks on the house” and strangers would come up to me and pat me on the back and give me high fives.

In reality, the night ended with me drinking way too much and regressing to my socially awkward grade nine self…the same girl that got so nervous walking past the lockers where those older boys hung out that I would literally sweat through my winter jacket.

So there you have it.

Whenever I think of the word “flushed” in the future, I will be taken back to that fateful night when a hot guy personally delivered my dropped feminine hygiene product.

Silver lining…

At least it wasn’t a used pad…

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An Open Letter to Jessica Jean



*This is a letter I wrote to a real person that I gave the fictional name of Jessica Jean because I have no idea what her real name is. She sort of looked like a Jessica or maybe a Kate but I liked Jessica better. Also, this is my first serious blog post. I’m trying to evolve as a writer. HA! Not really. I just needed to throw something down that’s been bothering me. I’ll stop blabbing in italics now and let you read. Enjoy!


My Dearest Jessica,


We don’t know each other.

We’ve never met.

I was strolling through the mall on my lunch break last Sunday when I noticed you shopping at the jewelry stand.

You’re probably around sixteen years old. You have perfectly straight brown hair and hip black frames for your glasses. You wore a plain white t-shirt and Birkenstock type sandals. You looked like a nice girl. You’re pretty and were smiling as you were chatting with the salesperson.

But these are not the reasons why I noticed you.

Sadly, it was because of your shorts.

I don’t mean to single you out Jessica, but I’m going to make an example out of you. You’re not the first girl I’ve even seen in ridiculously short shorts, but I hope you’ll be the last.

Here’s the thing, you are pretty and probably smart. I bet you have hobbies and goals and dreams like most teenaged girls. The problem is, when you wear shorts that are SO SHORT that they look like panties, no one is going to care about how awesome you are on the inside. All they are going to care about is your bum.

Seriously, Jessica. Your bum cheeks were hanging out the bottom of your shorts. That’s only a cute look on babies who toddle around in diapers.

Who let you go out in public with your bum on display for all to ogle? Where are your parents? How do they feel about your wardrobe choice?

Here’s how I feel Jessica. I feel worried. I feel like you have so much more to offer the world than your bum.

I feel that you are desperately seeking attention in the most dangerous of ways.

Old creepy guys are going to think it’s okay to approach you because of the way you’ve let your bum hang out of your shorts.

Girls at your school might spread rumours that you’re a slut or a whore or a skank because of your revealing attire.

Boys might think it’s okay to touch your bum because of the way you show it off.

I’m worried for you, Jessica Jean. You don’t need to show your bum for attention. There are so many other ways that you matter. Has anyone ever told you that? You can be anything that you want.

Don’t let the media drag you down to their level and brainwash you with their false ideals. I’m pretty sure the media gets their ideas from out of touch sleazeball guys who have no idea how it fells to be a sixteen year old girl. None of these guys have the slightest interest in who you are. They only care about making you hate yourself so that you’ll shell out all your money on the useless crap that they claim will make you prettier, skinnier and more popular. I bet these guys invented short shorts.

I know I’m sounding like an old lady who doesn’t understand the youth of today. You probably picture me as having fourteen cats and living in a shack down by the river. I bet you’re thinking that I’m jealous that you have a fantastic body and can wear whatever you want.

I am completely jealous of your thinness but not of your low self esteem. If you liked yourself just a little bit more, you wouldn’t have to show your bum to feel special. It’s really depressing, Jessica. You are so much more than a bum flasher.

Jessica Jean, I wish we could hang out. We’d eat ice cream and talk and play Boggle and maybe you’d teach me how to straighten my hair. I bet you’d surprise me with your wit and intelligence. I’d praise you until your face turned red.

At the end of the night, we’d throw your shorts into my fireplace and watch them burn. Hopefully that would give you the confidence to sway other girls to get rid of their booty shorts. You could support each other instead of hating on each other. You could form a community of smart, passionate and self confident teenaged girls.  Together you could demand that girls be heard in the media, outsmart the sleazeballs in suits and show the world how much you matter.

Thank you Jessica Jean for letting me vent. I’m sorry if I came off more preachy than passionate. I hope one day you’ll realize that you are so much more than just a bum hanging out of a pair of short shorts.

Thank you for letting me figuratively burn your booty shorts.

One day, I hope you do it for real.


My warmest regards,


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Foodstuff Friday


Last weekend at the grocery store, my five year old son fell in love.

We were waiting in line at the deli counter when his eyes locked on the mac ‘n cheese loaf.

“Mom, what is that?”, he said with wonderment.

“That’s some sort of meat with noodles and cheese in it”, I answered.

“Can we get it?” he asked.

“No”, I replied.


I folded. I bought three slices of “loaf” and my son was beside himself with joy.

At lunch, I gave each one of my children a slice of “loaf” to try.

They all hated it.

I was not surprised.

I wonder if anyone actually likes mac ‘n cheese loaf?

Also, what melange of mystery meats makes up “loaf”? I’m sure it’s the same pink sludge they use to make hot dogs.

I imagine that the mac ‘n cheese “loaf” people have an industrial sized vat of mechanically separated animal by-products that they eventually toss some old, abandoned mac ‘n cheese into. When it’s all mixed to perfection, I bet they jam it all into a giant machine that poops out the sludge into attractive little “loaves”. I picture it kind of looking like a Play-dough fun factory…except substitute the Play-dough with meat sludge.

Mmmmmmm…meat sludge.

Is anyone else hungry all of a sudden?

Before you get up to fix yourself a snack, why not read another one of my favourite losing writing contest stories? This one is really short, more of a blurb than an actual story. It’s about lunch foods and features my mom’s divine canned ham and pickle salad sandwiches.

If you’re tummy wasn’t rumbling before, it sure will be after reading this…

I’ll Take The Usual

  Growing up, my school lunches went a little something like this; peanut butter and jam sandwich on brown bread, apple, granola bar, some sort of cut up veggies and a juice box. My mom begrudgingly made this lunch for me from grade one until high school. Her attempts to try and change things up in the lunch department always failed.

  I groaned on the days where a hard boiled egg was found instead of my usual. Once she sent leftover stew in a thermos. I’ll never forget that day. On my way to school, my thermos had exploded in my backpack drenching all of it’s contents in mushy carrots, potatoes and beef. My classroom was in a portable that year and the whole day it reeked of hospital cafeteria. You know that smell, it’s a mix of onions, soup and body odour. Never again did I take anything to school in a thermos.

  Another dreaded lunch was the ham salad melange. Usually reserved for funerals and baby showers, it consisted of processed canned ham, mayonnaise and diced pickles. I dreaded hearing the sound of my mom’s food processor whirling in the wee hours of a week day morning. That was how she made the vile salmon hued spread. Needless to say, nobody ever wanted to trade sandwiches with me on rank ham day.

  Since my oldest son started grade one in September, I have become his official lunch maker. I would delight in sending him peanut butter and jam sandwiches, but nuts are banned from his school. His daily lunches go a little something like this; tortilla with hummus, cut up veggies, some sort of fruit, yogurt, granola bar and some water.

  He rarely complains about his midday meal, but then again, I’ve never sent him a ham salad sandwich or a thermos full of stew. And I never will.

  I know he prefers his usual.

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